Lack of Muppets. At least, that's my theory.
I grew up in an extremely Muppet-centric home, which helped make me the mature, responsible individual I am today; one who almost never eats entire tubs of frosting and almost always throws the dryer sheets away rather than stuffing them between the couch cushions.
Or, perhaps, a surefit of educational television.
When I was a kid, cartoons were just fun. Bugs Bunny didn't try to teach us anything, unless you count the pre-censorship World-War II era ones in which he taught us that Hitler was flammable. Saturday morning cartoons were the focus of my life for many years; all I really remember learning was that Mr. T wanted us to stay in school and Smurf Berry Crunch was Part of This Complete Breakfast. Today's kids are bombarded by such educational fare as Dora The Explorer (I'm Shouting At You In Two Languages!) and HigglyTown Heroes, whose definition of "hero" gets looser and looser as the series progresses. Any day, now, I expect to hear the following song:
I'm the dealer, and I grow
Pot to sell, and pot to own
If you're feeling too uptight,
Call me up, I'll fix you right!
Maybe licensed trademark characters aren't the problem. Maybe it's the fault of technology. Too much technology has our children becoming far too accustomed to convenience. Deb Jr., age 3.13, can operate her portable DVD player All By Herself. Admittedly, this isn't rocket science, but, still- she's 3! No wonder she looks at me as though I am the world's biggest idiot when I can't remember which button on the remote control turns off the captioning.
Perhaps it isn't them. Perhaps it is me, becoming crabbier as I approach my last birthday that could in any conceivable way be called "early" 30's.
No, that can't be it. It has to be them.
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